Kansas library offers therapy lights to help with seasonal depression [...]

When librarians discuss how to reach and serve underserved groups, we often think of time-intensive outreach programs to persuade them of the library’s relevance. But the Lawrence Public Library is piloting a simple, low-cost new program for people struggling with depression that isn’t about trying to sell the library to this population, but offering multiple resources to them — many of which are already part of the library or could be borrowed from staff:

[Readers’ services assistant] Gramlich, who has suffered from seasonal depression in the past, recognized a need for a welcoming, nonintimidating outlet for others who may be struggling with the feelings of hopelessness and decreased motivation that often accompany the shorter, darker days of winter. “People can come in, and maybe just being around people would be helpful,” Gramlich says of the lamp area, which library staffers are also stocking with literature on preventing and treating seasonal depression[…]
The message of the library, Gramlich says, is a simple one: You’re not alone. Acquiring and installing the lamps has been a “community effort” in itself, she says, with several library staffers lending their personal lamps to the cause.[…] “It’s not something that anybody talks about. So maybe if a patron comes in and sits down and realizes they’re by a few other people, they might think, ‘I’m not the only one feeling this way.’” (Source)

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